Wayne Marshall to show Tru Colors
LONG hours in recording studios and showing up on time for soundchecks are a big part of an artiste's life. Wayne Marshall experienced a lot of both in 2013.
The 33-year-old singer has another busy year ahead. His five-song EP, Tru Colors, drops November 26 on the Ghetto Youths International label.
The album of the same name, produced by Damian 'Junior Gong' Marley, is scheduled to be out in January.
To spike interest, Marshall's handlers are pushing Go Harder, a song he did with deejay Cham and American rappers Ace Hood and Waka Flocka.
Tru Colors will be released 10 years after Marshall Law, Marshall's debut album. He says the new set is head and shoulders over its predecessor.
"The first album was a compilation more than a project. I promised myself that the next album would be unified and that's what it is," he told the Jamaica Observer.
Marshall is known to dancehall fans for songs like Overcome and Make Dem Come. While satisfied those hits gave him a following, he believes he has outgrown that phase of his career.
"Some of the songs I did I listen now and cringe, when I hear the flat notes and other things. Here, I have a group of songs which I'm proud of," he said.
Tru Colors is among a batch of projects for the revived 'Ghetto Youths', a label formed by the Marley family in the 1990s to expose new talent.
Marshall is one of the artistes on the Marley radar. This year, he looked to move beyond his dancehall base with solo dates in Europe in January and February. He was back on the road in June with Junior Gong and Stephen Marley for another round of European shows as well as stops in Panama and Puerto Rico.
Marshall says the extensive road work has helped add another dimension to his craft.
"I'm learning more about instruments and performing for different people. It's really a new and improved Wayne Marshall."
Born Wayne Mitchell in middle-class Barbican, Marshall was raised in nearby Hope Pastures. His neighbours included famed music producer Lloyd 'King Jammys' James.
Hanging with James' sons Lloyd and Trevor introduced the budding singer to the gritty Waterhouse community where Jammys' legendary studio is located.
Marshall's first hit song, 2001's Hot in The Club was done with Bounty Killer and produced by Jammys protégés, Ward 21.
The following year, he hit it big with Overcome, recorded on producer Steven 'Lenky' Marsden's massive Diwali beat.
While gaining 'street cred' by rolling with hardcore acts like Bounty Killer and Vybz Kartel, Marshall says he favours the direction his new songs have taken him.
"They represent growth. I feel I have enough experience under my belt now to show my true colours."